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Congressional Democrats add Doheny to its ‘House of Scandal’

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The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has added Watertown Republican Matthew A. Doheny to its House of Scandal website over accusations leveled against him in past campaigns.

Mr. Doheny, who will face Elise M. Stefanik for the Republican nomination for the 21st Congressional District seat being vacated by Rep. William L. Owens, D-Plattsburgh, is criticized for a long-running dispute with a former campaign worker, for working for a company linked to a Cayman Islands tax haven and for being sued over late rent.

Here’s what the website alleges:

“In 2014, a former staffer accused Matt Doheny of failing to pay workers compensation for injuries sustained while working for his campaign. The staffer previously won a settlement of over $34,000 and Doheny was fined after it was found he failed to pay her fair wages. Doheny also faced questions in 2012 over working for a company that utilized the Cayman Islands as a tax haven. He was even sued twice for failing to pay rent on time on apartments in New York City. In 2010 it was revealed that he has been charged twice for boating while intoxicated, even getting handcuffed and acting “belligerent” during an incident.”

Last week, in response to questions about a worker’s compensation claim against Mr. Doheny’s 2012 campaign committee, Doheny spokesman David M. Catalfamo said Alicia E. Sirk was fired in July 2012 and has brought several legal actions against the campaign in the ensuing years, including a wage and labor dispute that Mr. Doheny settled. He characterized the recent claim as an attempt to derail Mr. Doheny’s current campaign and connected Mrs. Sirk with Mr. Doheny’s 2014 primary opponent, Elise M. Stefanik.

Mrs. Sirk said she has no affiliation with the Stefanik campaign, and last week Anthony Pileggi, Stefanik director of operations, also denied there was an official connection.

“Alicia is in no way formally a part of the Elise for Congress campaign,” Mr. Pileggi wrote in an email.

Times archives indicate the drunken boating charges date back to 2004, and the rent issue to 2000 and 2005. Both of those topics were brought up during Mr. Doheny’s 2010 campaign against Mr. Owens.

A call to the Doheny campaign has yet to be returned.

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